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Thread: That other narrow gauge

  1. Default That other narrow gauge

    Sumpter Valley

    That other narrow gauge

    Read this and other stories by Glen Brewer at

    Railroad Glory Days

    Last edited by gbrewer; 11-14-2010 at 06:41 PM.
    Glen Brewer

  2. #2


    Nice sharp photos and an informative text. I vaguely remember an article or two about the Sumpter Valley back when it was hauling logs so was surprised to hear it is still alive to a degree. Your first shot of 19 in the morning light is my favorite. It is a real eye grabber and pulled me right into the the rest of the essay. Also love hte fireman's coffee cup on the firing levers.

    I vote to approve.

    Martin Burwash

  3. Default

    Ditto Martin + it's nice to see some coverage of this little gem. Eastern Oregon is a long way from most anyplace. Got to get over there one of these days. The 19 sure looks beautiful!

    I vote to approve and post.
    Get Out There and Shoot!

  4. #4
    Two23 Guest


    Easy vote for approve! You had some very solid information, and I liked that a lot. It helped to put it all into perspective. Photos were all at least pretty good, and some excellent. I especially liked the detail shots. I would take out the sentences complaining about the sun direction. It really didn't detract from the shot anyway. For you general information, the nose of trains can easily be lit with x2 Nikon SB type flash off camera, set to full power. That would provide enough fill flash. Still, not at all bad as is. There were a few misspelled words but not enough to get under my skin. Your writing was good, moved along nicely, and as I mentioned very informative. This looks like a nice little operation that has fallen through the cracks somehow. I will have to check it out.

    Kent in SD

  5. #5
    Two23 Guest


    Went back and reread and there were no misspelled words, but I think "commonalty" is generally used when talking about people rather than objects.

    BTW, there actually IS a 2-6-6-2 Mallet in regular steam service. It's the only articulated steamer in regular duty besides the UP 3985. This is the engine used the most at the 1880 Train in Hill City, SD. It's pretty cool! Converted to run on used motor oil as I recall.

    Kent in SD

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Feb 2006
    close to Lake Ontario in Burlington, ON Canada

    Default SV rides again

    Narrow gauge includes anything less than 7 foot gauge as per

    However other narrow gauge operations not noted in the header were
    Prince Edward Island which was originally three foot gauge as was
    the colonial operations
    of the Newfoundland Railway which was said
    3 foot gauge up to its demise.

    And Prince Edward Island was later made 4 foot 8.5
    inches give or take.

    Some personal thoughts. The engineer has a cell phone in the small holder
    under the window on the right side, the track appears to be well-laid
    and the operations are Steam! I see the small Plymouth? diesel
    in the background as well as some of the rolling stock. I would've like to see
    a photo of the preserved dredge, maybe with a steam locomotive alongside.

    The location is a bit far off the beaten track but then wasn't there
    a Kalmbach soft cover book published in the 1950's also
    entitled Off The Beaten Track?

    I vote for acceptance.

    Oh and maybe have Glen reread his narrative as there are one or two
    minor grammatical errors. otherwise, go for it!!

    Bryce Lee

  7. #7


    Wow, that's narrow gauge??? Hard to believe since there's no shays or outside driving weights.

    Nice work Glen.
    Sam Reeves Photography
    Celebrating 10 Years on the Internet 1999-2009
    Pacific Grove, California

  8. Default

    Thanks, Martin, Jon, Kent, Bryce and Sam.

    I appreciate the comments and hope I have addressed all the issues mentioned. Please let me know if I missed something.

    Bryce: You would be amazed at how many railfans south of the border have never heard of old Isambard. I'd love to see a good photo essay of his work. Yes, I have read a couple of books about him. And, perhaps I am a bit US oriented where thoughts of recent NG operations existed. Thanks for pointing out that the White Pass wasn't the only one up North.

    Sam: Of the three NG essays I have posted here, not one of them shows a shay or an outside framed engine (not that there is anything wrong with either).

    Last edited by gbrewer; 07-16-2008 at 07:58 PM.
    Glen Brewer

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Feb 2006
    close to Lake Ontario in Burlington, ON Canada

    Default Ikb

    I have a number of books on IKBrunel most of which are
    long out of print.

    In reviewing Glen's essay I must admit, this one narrow
    gauge operation I would like to visit. That Mikado is
    a stunningly beautiful locomotive. And the interior photographs of the
    driving cab show the locomotive was restored for practical
    purposes ie the drawers under the fireman's seat.

    The East Broad top is restored to also a six mile length, however one
    hopes the Sumpter Valley goes much further in distance!

  10. #10


    Duplicate image for promo
    Bob Harbison
    RailroadPhotoEssays host

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